Last August, Gov. Rick Perry vetoed a statute that would have amended the state version of Title VII the way Congress amended Title VII to allow women to sue for discrimination in their pay. See my posts here. The state version of Title VII is known as the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act. This is the state statute that prohibits discrimination based on gender.
There is no good reason not to amend the TCHRA as Title VII was amended. Since its inception, the TCHRA has always tracked the wording of Title VII. State case law has long been based on federal case law regarding Title VII. We learned later that Gov. Perry was influenced by lobbyists when he vetoed the proposed statute.
Now, the San Antonio Express News has referred to a lawsuit where such an amendment would have made a difference. In a lawsuit by a professor against Prairie View A&M, the plaintiff sued on the basis of discrimination in her pay. She claimed she was paid less than male co-workers performing the same work. Her lawsuit, however, was based on the TCHRA. The Texas Supreme Court ruled against the professor. The decision by the Texas Supreme Court specifically said the court cannot legislate changes in the TCHRA. If the state legislature wanted to amend the TCHRA, it should do so via the legislative branch, not the judicial branch. See San Antonio Express News report.
Yes, indeed. That is what the backers of the bill said when Gov. Perry vetoed their bill with no warning.